Carthage carthage was a city near the midpoint of the mediterranean coast which obtained all its wealth through trade. In 264 b. c. e. , carthage and rome went to war for control of sicily and the western mediterranean. Punic wars the punic wars were a series of three struggles between rome and carthage. The word punic comes from the latin word for phoenicia, since carthage was a former phoenician colony. In the end, carthage lost their power as a wealthy trading city in the mediterranean and. Hannibal hannibal was a carthaginian who was a great military genius. He is father made him swear to hate rome, so he assembled an army in 218 b. c. and crossed the alps. Roman armies that assembled to fight him, but for 13 years he lived off the farmland and could not seize rome. Finally, scipio attacked carthage and hannibal rushed back, but he was defeated. He governed for seven more years and then killed himself.